Assault Charges In Hotel Room Invasion

OCEAN CITY — A Lanham, Md. man was arrested on first-degree assault charges last week after allegedly barging into a downtown hotel room and threatening two women with a large knife.

Around 7:15 p.m. last Friday, an Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officer was dispatched to a hotel on 5th Street for a reported assault. When the officer arrived, he observed two females yelling from a second-floor window to individuals on the street below and asking for help.

The officer met with the two victims, who reportedly told police they were inside their hotel room when a man later identified as James Brown, 21, of Lanham, Md., barged in with a woman and small child. The victims told police Brown argued with the woman, who eventually left the unit, leaving Brown and the small child behind.

The victims told police Brown stood on the top of their living room table and they told him to get out, which only made him angrier and more aggressive, according to police reports. Brown then went outside and began harassing others in the street including a pizza delivery driver. When someone tried to assist the allegedly intoxicated Brown after he fell, Brown reportedly yelled he would “shoot the whole entire hotel up,” according to police reports.

The two victims told police they walked back into their unit and Brown followed them. One victim told police when she turned around to ask him again to leave, Brown brandished a large knife with the blade fully extended and pointed it at her.

The victim told police she backed up toward her bedroom and Brown followed her with large knife extended to within an inch of her stomach. The victim told police Brown backed her into a corner with the knife still just an inch from her stomach and that she feared for her life.

Brown then turned around and walked out of the unit, stumbling and falling down the steps as he attempted to flee and the two victims called 911. Brown was located a short time later on the corner of 5th Street and Baltimore Avenue. During the subsequent search, OCPD officer located in Brown’s pocket a large folding knife with a serrated edge. According to police reports, the knife was 15 inches long in total, with the blade portion around eight inches.

The victims were brought separately to identify Brown and each told police they were 100% certain he was the suspect who had barged into their unit and threatened them with a knife. Brown was arrested and charged with 11 total counts including two counts of first-degree assault, home invasion and burglary. He was being held midweek on a $25,000 bond.

About The Author: Shawn Soper

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Shawn Soper has been with The Dispatch since 2000. He began as a staff writer covering various local government beats and general stories. His current positions include managing editor and sports editor. Growing up in Baltimore before moving to Ocean City full time three decades ago, Soper graduated from Loch Raven High School in 1981 and from Towson University in 1985 with degrees in mass communications with a journalism concentration and history.